Planner Marks: Dots and Dashes | Giftie Etcetera: Planner Marks: Dots and Dashes

Friday, November 21, 2014

Planner Marks: Dots and Dashes

Loyal Readers will recall that I often use context codes to divide up tasks into times and places where they should get done. Obviously, if I am on the road, I don't even glance at the tasks coded with an H for home. And if I'm working on my computer, I mostly focus on tasks coded with a C.

But when I am swamped, sometimes I need something more visual to help me decide what to do in the immediate future. 

I simply add dots and dashes to task lists to decide what to do first.

Of course, I use my context codes as guidance. So, in the picture above, I used my highlighter to add dashes to things that I need to complete right now, on my laptop in a coffee shop. Then, before I head home, I need to run an errand. So a dot (less significant than a dash) goes beside the errand.

Now, at a quick glance, I can get my critical tasks done.

Another option is to use numbers, but those work better for tasks that need to be done in a certain order.

In my case, today, I can do the computer tasks in any order, but they all must be done before I leave the coffee shop.

This simple tip works with any task list.

TIP: Use the dash/dot technique when grocery shopping. At the beginning of each section of the store, dot the items that are on the list from that section. Before each aisle, dash the items on that aisle.

This technique allows me to stop doubling back because I forget the ketchup. I always forget the ketchup.

Also, since I highlight the items as they are complete, the dots and dashes simply disappear under the highlighter as I mark off tasks, allowing me to dot/dash a second part of the list.


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